Boy, that Jack Nicklaus is really great, isn't he! Yes siree! He beat Arnold Palmer in winning his first professional tournament and so now he has become a "superstar," a "wonder man of golf," and "one of the most extraordinarily gifted players of the post-Hogan generation," according to your sensational Alfred Wright (That Big Strong Dude, June 25).
Certainly it takes a fine golfer to beat Palmer, but let's not go overboard in our lavish praises. I mean Jack Nicklaus had a good weekend and all that, but are we going to put him in a class with Arnold Palmer already? Sheesh!!
Alfred Wright is obviously not to be taken seriously, but I'm still having my name changed.
I liked your well-illustrated story about the National Open victory of Jack Nicklaus—with one exception. It does not seem right that Jack should have been called "Dude."
E. J. CRANE
As an American I have to wonder what reflection it will have on President Kennedy's physical fitness program when a rather plump fellow like Jack Nicklaus can most decidedly defeat a slim, trim athlete such as Arnie Palmer.
J. J. ALPHONSUS MUSEWICZ
He ought to be called "Tierce" Nicklaus. (To save you looking it up, tierce is bakers' parlance for "tub of lard.") And you can have him. He addresses every shot as though it were taking a major effort of will to strike the ball, at long last. Though thoroughly sickened by sportswriters' hysterical adulation of Palmer, one can still find pleasure in watching Arnie play, even when he is "off."
W. C. FAIRCHILD
I am personally fed up with golfers who claim that a leaf crashing heavily to the sand or an earthworm turning over in his hole ruined their concentration. A prime example took place in the National Open when a good golfer by the name of Palmer became involved in such alibi-making.
Can't you just imagine Stan Musial refusing to step into the batter's box in the ninth inning of a tied World Series game until the crowd was hushed, or Bob Pettit stubbornly waiting to shoot a free throw in the NBA championship game until the photographers had quit snapping pictures? These things are a part of life, and if the golfers find them so overwhelming perhaps they should consider a change in vocation. Or better yet, why don't they just stop making excuses and start being honest?
Baseball calls its mistakes errors, football calls them fumbles and tennis calls them faults. Why can't professional golfers be men and call a goof a goof?
ROBERT L. WALLER
ON BENDED LINE
I'm getting sick and tired of having sailing instructors, landlocked mariners and now experienced yachtsmen promote the malicious myth that the boy scouts' square knot is a proper device for fastening two lines (ropes to you) together (Part IV, Better Boating, June 25). Its very name belies this. Lines are bent together, not knotted, hence any device designed to do the job is called a bend. To do it properly the bend must hold fast without binding, must never shake free and yet be easy to unfasten. Only the carrick bend (see above) fulfills all these conditions. The square knot, which is more properly called the reef knot, fulfills none of them. It is correctly used only to put in reefs or tie shoelaces. (That's right, the "bow" in your shoe is nothing but a double-slipped reef knot.)
New York City